Anna LeBaron is the daughter of Ervil LeBaron, a man considered to be a Prophet by his many followers. He had several wives and more than fifty children and it was well known that he would attempt to murder anyone who left his cult. Anna was raised in this violent, polygamous family and she and her siblings grew up starving and abused. As a young child she was forced to work long, difficult hours in the cult’s appliance store. At the age of nine her father began planning for her marriage. She risked her life to run away from the cult at the age of thirteen. In “The Polygamist’s Daughter” Anna tells her story of growing up neglected and abused within the prison of her dangerous family.
This is a story filled with darkness and despair yet it is also a story that celebrates the few people in Anna’s life who gave her what she needed most: hope. With the help of those caring individuals, some of whom blatantly defied the orders of the cult and eventually paid the ultimate price for it, Anna learned how to take charge of her own life by finding her true identity as a beloved child of God. For anyone who has struggled with a difficult childhood, this memoir proves that even the most troubling pasts can be redeemed. Ultimately, Anna’s story is one of overcoming. One special person in Anna’s life named Estelle captures the essence of this book when she stands beside Anna at Ervil LeBaron’s grave and proclaims, “You’re lying there–dead for many years. But here stands your daughter! She has overcome.”
I received an Advance Reader’s Copy of The Polygamist’s Daughter in exchange for my honest review.